VSEC’s emergency room accepts emergency referrals or walk-in animal emergencies 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. We provide after-hours, weekend and holiday emergency services for hundreds of veterinary practices throughout the Greater Philadelphia area.
The goal of the Emergency Service of our veterinary specialty hospital is to provide the highest level of 24-hour emergency medical and surgical care in conjunction with consistent and effective communication with the client and referring veterinarian.
Appointments are not needed for our emergency hospital however it is advised that the client or their referring veterinarian call ahead so we will be prepared for the patient’s arrival. If you are having an emergency or you are concerned about your pet’s health, you may call our emergency service at anytime. One of our trained nurses will be available to discuss your concerns and determine if emergency care is needed.
VSEC’s emergency service is led by six board-certified veterinary emergency and critical care specialists who are Diplomates of the American College of Veterinary Emergency & Critical Care (ACVECC). Only Diplomates of the ACVECC have completed a 3-year residency in emergency and critical care and passed a series of national qualifying examinations. No other veterinarians have received as much rigorous and complete training and testing in the field of veterinary emergency and critical care.
Along with the team of board-certified veterinary emergency and critical care specialists the emergency service is staffed by trained emergency room doctors to provide 24 hour patient care.
- 24-hour staffing by doctors and nurses for your pet’s emergency care
- Immediate testing and stabilization of any medical or surgical patient
- Blood typing, cross-matching, blood and plasma transfusions for anemia and bleeding disorders
- Oxygen therapy and respiratory support including ventilation for patients with respiratory distress
- Full-service, in-house stat laboratory including blood gas analysis
- Emergency surgery available at all times for emergency cases like GDV, hemoabdomen, C section and foreign body obstruction
Please keep in mind that patients are seen in order of arrival based on the severity of the illness or injury.
When you come to the VSEC emergency service, a triage nurse will take your pet’s vital signs and a brief history. If the triage nurse has any concerns, your pet may be brought to the treatment area for further evaluation by the nursing staff or the emergency veterinarian to determine if immediate treatment is needed.
After the patient’s examination and evaluation, the emergency doctor will discuss a diagnostic and treatment plan with you. Based on the severity of illness, the doctor may recommend that your pet be treated as an outpatient or may advise hospitalization for ongoing care. An estimate will be provided for the cost of the care.
Following patient evaluation, communication with the pet owner, and consent for care; tests and treatments will begin as soon as possible. Diagnostic test results are often available the same day, and your doctor will review these results with you. You will also receive patient updates from your doctor and the nursing staff throughout the duration of hospitalization.
In addition, your primary veterinarian will be updated on your pet’s status and treatment. Decisions for your pet’s care are made in conjunction with input from your primary veterinarian. Stable pets requiring ongoing care after initial treatment are encouraged to be transferred back to their primary veterinarian.
If the pet is in an unstable condition, we can provide continued hospitalization at VSEC in our Intensive Care Unit (ICU) which is staffed 7 days a week by our board certified emergency and critical care specialists.
The emergency department can also facilitate your pet seeing another specialty service at VSEC on an emergency basis. VSEC specialists in emergency and critical care, internal medicine, surgery, cardiology, radiology, medical oncology, radiation oncology, dermatology, ophthalmology, dentistry and oral surgery, clinical pathology, and acupuncture provide consultations through our emergency service.